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New Holiday Inn Express for O’Connell Street

A former office block on Dublin’s famous O’Connell Street is set to be turned into a 198-bedroom hotel. The latest addition to the hotel sector in the capital will be a Holiday Inn Express which is expected to open early next year. A Northern Ireland building firm, McAleer & Rushe, this week announced it had won the €13.8m contract to work on the hotel project in Dublin city centre.

Martin Magee from McAleer & Rushe said: “McAleer & Rushe’s involvement signals our confidence in Dublin’s resurgence. The works include the complete soft strip of the building, removal of plant rooms and the existing facade, reconfiguration of the internal cores and the construction of an additional floor.” He went on to say that the scheme would “integrate an unloved 1970s office block into the wider contextual fabric of Dublin’s most famous thoroughfare”. The company previously built the W Hotel in London’s Leicester Square.

When completed in the spring of next year, the new hotel will operate under a franchise agreement with Intercontinental Hotels Group (IHG) owner Findlater House Ltd.

In a further sign of improvement in Dublin’s hotel sector, the latest edition of PwCs European Cities hotel forecast found that in the capital the average daily room rate has increased by over 25 per cent from €80 in 2011 to a projected €102 this year. Occupancy rates are showing a healthy rise as well, up from 71 per cent in 2011 to 80 per cent this year. The higher prices and increased guest numbers have pushed the key Revenue Per Available Room rate for Dublin hotels up 42 per cent from €57 in 2011 to an expected €80 this year.